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Aligning Yourself to God

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What does being bold look like to you?  For some, like my 70 year old friend Betsy it looks like an almost 24 mile desert terrain hike with no water source.  Not my cup of tea but Betsy has also climbed Mt. Whitney a few times. For the next few days your short term goal is to make a list of at least 3-5 bold actions you have always dreamt of doing.  Write this list without any qualifications such as cost, time, skill, etc.  You’ve wanted to be a ballerina?  Write it down.  You want to travel the world, write it down.  You need to have that hard conversation with someone you love, write it down.  You want to completely change your look?  Yes, write it down.  You want to change a thought pattern, you got it, write it down.  You want to dive deeper into your faith, hallelujah!  Write it down! As Christians we should already know the things that should not ever be on your dream list.  If you hang around with Jesus long enough you know exactly “what would Jesus do.” John 10:27 says, “My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they follow me.” Meaning if you have a relationship with Jesus and know His Word and live out His Word you will already know the basics of what he does and doesn’t want from us.  Just as our children continue to grow and not need to ask us questions like, “can I go to the bathroom” or “can I get a drink of water”, as Christians we already know it’s ok to learn Tai Chi or send in that book proposal.  God also wants us to be bold in forgiving that one person who did or said the “unforgiveable.” Sometimes, as Christian author Kevin DeYoung writes in his book, “Just Do Something,” we spend so much time worrying that we haven’t found God’s perfect will for our lives that we do absolutely nothing, stuck in a frustrated state of paralyzed indecision waiting and waiting for clear, direct, unmistakable direction. So, step one – just make your list.  Dream, or remember the dreams you’ve had that you’ve pushed aside.  Notice I didn’t say do the stuff on your list without praying?  That’s a whole different story.  If you feel comfortable sharing your list, please do, we’d love to be awed by your dreams! . #dreams #goals #bold #god #boldness #jesus

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Pruning Part 2

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Some of you might still be scratching your heads about pruning.  You thought this was about being bold! Taking action!  Climbing Kilimanjaro! It is. But creating fruit takes work.  It takes planning & preparation. Even just going to God and asking Him for direction on being bold takes preparation. The famous evangelist Charles Spurgeon once preached: “In times of peril and distress we may fly to God just as we are; however in ordinary times we should not come with an unprepared spirit.” We need to recognize prayer as a real conversation with God; we need to ask for what we want with fervency (one of my favorite words); and we need complete submission to God, leaving it to Him to direct our steps. . What does pruning have to do with this? You see the picture of my yard?  That’s what it looks like right now, after I spent hours pruning it.  My neighbors get sad when I do this.  What I tell them is, just wait until next month. It’ll be beautiful! If I don’t cut out the deadwood and the dead flowers some of these plants become unruly.  Others like the Mexican sage get leggy and unattractive. . So what is it that you need to prune to work on your preparation for success?  For most of us it’s our negative thought patterns. “I don’t have time.” “I’m frightened at the prospect.” “I’m not really good at anything.” But being bold with our lives is what God asks from us!  Joyce Meyer once said, “You cannot have a positive life and a negative mind.” . So much of what holds us back lives in a small space.  But that small space holds an incredible power over us.  Go look in the mirror and stare into the eyes of this space. The negativity we allow to happen there is loved by the devil. My prayer for you right now is to have God help you with pruning those negative thoughts. Because folks, we’ve got work to do and a life to live! . #bold #challenge #positivity #god #pruning #fervent

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Trim Your Deadwood

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Do you have deadwood or a drag holding you back from being bold? “Drag” is defined as a type of friction that is acting in opposition to the relative motion of any object. Bet you didn’t think your first day of being a part of the Boldness Bunch meant eliminating something first. ☺️ . But notice the verse says He continues to prune even our branches that bear fruit. We are never “done.” We need to constantly ask for pruning to be sure our fruit, our works are our best offering. . I decided to try my hand one more season at growing tomatoes. For the last few years I’ve grown beautiful plants that bore little fruit. I can’t call them “tomato plants.” Without fruit they were more like weeds. This year I dug deep into reading tips and techniques on growing tomatoes— not plants. I was advised to cut all the lower leaves off so it didn’t touch the dirt. Next, I removed all the first set of flowers. That hurt. Those were potential tomatoes! Next I removed all the “suckers,” branches that were only going to take away from the main purpose. A month later my daughter has asked me, “What in the world are you going to do with all those tomatoes 🍅!” I have plans for each one. . I dare you today, not tomorrow, TODAY, to ask God what pruning needs to be done in you before you even take one step toward your goal. . #pruning #growth #fruits #god #jesus #jesuschrist #bold #john15 #growthmindset #firstfruits

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Two Crutches Please!

Stop Waiting Start Moving

Pure Joy

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What is the difference between joy and happiness? I’d venture to say that a lot of what’s going on in the world are people trying to find happiness. . For many that’s the ultimate goal — to “be happy.” The dictionary defines happy as a feeling of showing pleasure or contentment. I started my faith journey looking for happiness. It evolved into looking for joy. The dictionary defines joy as a feeling of “great” happiness. But that misses the mark. . True joy, I have discovered, comes every morning when you wake and recognize God is with you on every step of your day — whether circumstances are good or bad. True joy is not something to “get” or “find.” It’s something to release. When we accept that the Holy Spirit lives in us that means Joy lives in us. It’s our brain and feelings that tend to want to block that joy off from the world. . You see my dog Tucker? He doesn’t know who God is. But he lives out his life with the joy God put in him. He doesn’t question it. He doesn’t look for it. He just has it. I think that’s why humans love to watch dogs play and romp around. It’s pure joy that’s bubbled to the surface. . When we search for happiness we rely on man-made results. When we release the joy in us—our gratefulness to God for his companionship—no matter our circumstances, we are transformed. . #joy #happiness #god #transformation #jesus #holyspirit #puppylove

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